Our Policies

About Academy of Play and Child Psychotherapy – APAC

APAC Complaints Philosophy

APAC believes that:

  • Most complaints will arise because the complainant’s expectations are different from those of the training provider, facilitators, clinical supervisors or placement organization.
  • All trainees have the right to complain against or raise concerns about any individual connected with their course work without any fear that these will have any impact upon the marking of their assignments or other factor determining their course outcomes.
  • Some delegates will be in the process of resolving personal problems and may find attending and residing in a ‘strange’ place stressful.
  • All complaints need to be treated seriously and dealt with quickly, sympathetically and fairly.
  • In balancing the needs of as many course members as possible some individuals may not believe that their particular needs are dealt with fully.
  • No operation involving people can be expected to be perfect. Complaints are seen as a valuable source of feedback for improvements as well as a safety valve.

Our procedures are based on this philosophy which is intended to minimise the number of complaints in the first place as well as dealing with them.

The APAC accredited Play Therapy training provides a consistent and coherent programme across the UK in 12 venues in a collaborative partnership with Leeds Beckett University in the UK, and the National University of Ireland (Galway). In addition we deliver courses in Australia, France, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Ireland, Malaysia, New Zealand and Singapore.  The course content is the same wherever you choose to train.  The APAC faculty is used across all locations to deliver the courses in all venues.  The work is examined by the same professional staff and External Examiners. Our Play Therapy training courses fully meet the UK and International Standards set by Play Therapy UK  (PTUK) and Play Therapy International (PTI). This is a unique and more equitable approach than that used by other Play Therapy training providers.

Extensive clinical research shows that participants who successfully complete APAC’s Play Therapy training courses achieve measurable results with the children that are not available from other training programmes.

For more information – including the ‘Complete Guide to Careers in Play Therapy’ – a 28 page full colour brochure phone 01825 761143 or email contact@apac.org.uk

Expectations

Each of our courses sets out to achieve specific learning objectives. We also state what we feel the participants should be able to do after they have completed the course. These points are spelt out:

  • In our promotional literature and on www.playtherapy.org.uk
  • During the application process – face to face but usually over the telephone for trainees’ convenience
  • At the start of the course
  • In the Student’s Handbook

During the course the material being delivered and the practical and experiential exercises are related to the learning objectives. This minimises the chances of a delegate complaining that the content is not relevant or suitable.

The time to be allowed for each activity is suggested by the facilitators for agreement by the participants. Progress is checked at least once during the activity to see if an extension is required. Very occasionally some individuals are out of step with the majority or the time table. Sufficient time is allowed in the evenings and facilities are available to enable individuals to ‘catch up’.

This largely overcomes potential problems of pacing the learning process.

The APAC accredited Play Therapy training provides a consistent and coherent programme across the UK in 12 venues in a collaborative partnership with Leeds Beckett University in the UK, and the National University of Ireland (Galway). In addition we deliver courses in Australia, France, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Ireland, Malaysia, New Zealand and Singapore.  The course content is the same wherever you choose to train.  The APAC faculty is used across all locations to deliver the courses in all venues.  The work is examined by the same professional staff and External Examiners. Our Play Therapy training courses fully meet the UK and International Standards set by Play Therapy UK  (PTUK) and Play Therapy International (PTI). This is a unique and more equitable approach than that used by other Play Therapy training providers.

Extensive clinical research shows that participants who successfully complete APAC’s Play Therapy training courses achieve measurable results with the children that are not available from other training programmes.

For more information – including the ‘Complete Guide to Careers in Play Therapy’ – a 28 page full colour brochure phone 01825 761143 or email contact@apac.org.uk

Complaints Process

Most of our training venues are therapeutically sensitive environments. The facilitators and support staff make a point of getting to know each participant as an individual. On the first morning delegates are encouraged to express any concerns or fears so that these can be taken care of as far as possible.

Each participant is introduced to and encouraged to contact a senior member of APAC as well as those actively involved in running the course. This provides a degree of impartiality to deal with complaints.

The opportunity to raise a complaint is given publicly at the start and end of each day’s proceedings, privately each day after the conclusion of proceedings and in the evaluation form at the end of the course.

When a complaint is raised the participant is given the option of having it discussed with other course members, or dealt with privately and if desired, with complete anonymity.

If the complaint concerns a Course Facilitator or Tutor it is notified to and discussed with the Course Director. If it concerns the Course Director, it must be notified to and discussed with a Director of APAC who is familiar with the course objectives and content but not directly involved in the event. If it is about registered Clinical Supervisor or a placement organisation’s personnel, the complaint should be made to the Chief Executive of PTUK/PTI. If it is about a Director of APAC the complaint should be made to the Chair, British Council for Therapeutic Interventions for Children (BCTIWC).

The complainant is encouraged to talk fully without interruption or write extensively until she/he has no more to say. The person dealing with the complaint will then try to establish objectively and factually the key issue of the complaint comparing this information to what has been promised or implied. If another individual(s) is involved they will be consulted, separately at first and then jointly to establish their side of the case. Agreement will be sought upon the key issue.

The complainant will then be asked what outcome they desire.  The person dealing with the complaint will then identify a number of options that might meet, or go some way to meeting the desired outcome, taking into account:

  • Any request for anonymity
  • The needs of the other delegates
  • The needs of the teaching and support staff
  • What has been promised (if there is a cost or time factor)
  • Ethical and legal factors

As far as is practical we attempt to resolve the complaint on the spot or at latest within 5 working days.  We do not want dissatisfied participants affecting the morale of others.

If it is not possible to resolve an individual complaint without having a negative impact on the other delegates or meeting our other criteria and it is sufficiently serious, the individual will be asked to leave the course. A proportionate refund of fees will be made.

Sensitivity

Most of our training venues are therapeutically sensitive environments. The facilitators and support staff make a point of getting to know each participant as an individual. On the first morning delegates are encouraged to express any concerns or fears so that these can be taken care of as far as possible.

The APAC accredited Play Therapy training provides a consistent and coherent programme across the UK in 12 venues in a collaborative partnership with Leeds Beckett University in the UK, and the National University of Ireland (Galway). In addition we deliver courses in Australia, France, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Ireland, Malaysia, New Zealand and Singapore.  The course content is the same wherever you choose to train.  The APAC faculty is used across all locations to deliver the courses in all venues.  The work is examined by the same professional staff and External Examiners. Our Play Therapy training courses fully meet the UK and International Standards set by Play Therapy UK  (PTUK) and Play Therapy International (PTI). This is a unique and more equitable approach than that used by other Play Therapy training providers.

Extensive clinical research shows that participants who successfully complete APAC’s Play Therapy training courses achieve measurable results with the children that are not available from other training programmes.

For more information – including the ‘Complete Guide to Careers in Play Therapy’ – a 28 page full colour brochure phone 01825 761143 or email contact@apac.org.uk

Feedback

Most of our training venues are therapeutically sensitive environments. The facilitators and support staff make a point of getting to know each participant as an individual. On the first morning delegates are encouraged to express any concerns or fears so that these can be taken care of as far as possible.

All complaints and their outcomes are logged if they are not recorded in the evaluation forms. All evaluation forms and logged complaints are reviewed by the facilitating/directing staff together with an APAC Director after each course. If necessary procedures, methods, equipment etc. are changed for the next course.

University Academic Appeals Procedures

In addition to the APAC complaints procedure, students have the right of appeal under the University Student Regulations with respect to academic matters such as assessment and progression. In the first instance, where a student feels an error or misjudgment has been made, the Programme Director should be consulted, who may be able to rectify the matter by reporting the details to the appropriate authority. In cases where the Programme Director is unable to rectify the situation, and the student is still dissatisfied, then the student should make a written appeal, giving the full details of the matter and including any supporting evidence to the Programme Director, who will institute appropriate action through the University Academic Appeals Procedure.

All complaints and their outcomes are logged if they are not recorded in the evaluation forms. All evaluation forms and logged complaints are reviewed by the facilitating/directing staff together with an APAC Director after each course. If necessary procedures, methods, equipment etc. are changed for the next course.

You can view and download a copy of our Complaints Procedures [Here].

Equality and Diversity

LGBTI Policy Statement

APAC aims to foster a culture among its staff and registrants whereby the rights of families, children and young people are respected, protected and fulfilled; where their voices are heard and where they are supported to realise their maximum potential now and in the future.

This LGBTI policy has been created to ensure that all members of APAC staff and registrants behave in a way that respects the mental health and wellbeing of LGBTI people to enable LGBTI people to live full and equal lives.

Core Values that underpin the statement:

  • Inclusiveness: APAC advocates for a world that embraces diversity and promotes an integrated and supportive society.
  • Equality: APAC celebrates difference and support equal opportunity for LGBTI people that enables them to achieve their potential.
  • Rights: APAC promotes the right to be LGBTI people in a safe environment that is free from negativity and supports freedom of expression.
  • Empowerment: APAC fosters an environment where LGBTI people are supported and encouraged to co-produce and partner on initiatives.
  • Respect: APAC treats all LGBTI people with respect by being considerate of people’s differences and choices.
  • Positivity: APAC promotes the collective expression of success among the LGBTI+ community.
  • Acceptance: APAC encourages all LGBTI people to express themselves openly and promote the recognition of people’s preferences (e.g. pronouns) so that they know they will be accepted in this safe and inclusive and environment.

This policy does not tolerate negative attitudes towards LGBTI people and advocates the correction of misunderstandings of LGBTI identities. It furthermore acknowledges that all sections of society have a role to play including Government, State Agencies, health and social sevices, schools, LGBTI organisations, local communities, families, individual citizens and LGBTI people themselves. This policy promotes the acceptance of one’s LGBTI identity and supports a person’s personal growth in the face of having to overcome challenges in order to achieve this stage of identity acceptance.

APAC seeks to foster inclusive policies that recognise difference and diversity in order to help LGBTI people and other minorities to feel confident that they are welcome, included and respected, and that any related concerns they might have will be addressed. Such inclusive policies are the basis of a positive organisational climate and culture that is welcoming, supportive and encouraging of all staff, registrants and service users.

APAC seeks to ‘proof’ all existing key policies so that difference and diversity is acknowledged within the organisation and to ensure that these policies are inclusive of LGBT people and other minorities.

APAC is very aware that family forms have changed considerably in the past few decades. In addition to the more common family unit of mother, father and children, APAC acknowledges and respects different forms of family including:

  • One parent families (either mother or father)
  • Trans-generational families (one or two grandparents as the main care givers)
  • Step-family arrangements (sometimes known as ‘blended families’)
  • Foster families
  • Two parents/guardians of the same-sex
  • Siblings from different families (as in the case of ‘blended families’)
  • Families where parents/guardians live apart
  • Young people in care
  • Children with adoptive parents/ guardians.

APAC is committed to the provision of capacity building measures among its staff and registrants to improve their understanding of and ability to engage with LGBTI people. One of the key objectives of these measures is to ensure that the LGBTI policy is clearly understood and implemented across all sectors of the organisation. Positive outcomes are likely to result in an improved understanding of, and effective responses to the mental and physical health needs of LGBTI people. All members of staff are encouraged to play an important role in supporting the implementation of this policy and promoting a positive organisational climate and culture that is welcoming of difference and diversity.

Registrants are advised to prepare a professional development plan annually taking into account that clinical practice involves working with complex relationships requiring different types of professional knowledge, attitudes and dispositions.

APAC furthermore aims to enhance the quality of LGBTI data and encourages evidence based research to inform policy and service delivery among its registrants.

Glossary of Terms

Gender expression

How someone presents their gender externally, for example through clothes, appearance and behaviour.

Gender identity

Someone’s internal perception of their gender – how they feel inside about their gender.

Intersex

A term used to describe people born with physical or biological sex characteristics that do not fit the typical definitions for male or female bodies.

Non-binary

Gender identities that are not exclusively masculine or feminine.

Sexual orientation

Refers to the attraction people feel towards others based on their gender.

Transgender

An umbrella term for anyone whose gender identity or gender expression is different from the biological sex they were assigned at birth.

Trans

A commonly used shorthand version of transgender.

Trans-man

A person who was assigned a female sex at birth, who now identifies as a man.

Trans-woman

A person who was assigned a male sex at birth, who now identifies as a woman.

References

APAC wishes to thank and acknowledge the following resources and documents which were drawn upon to revise and upgrade its current LGBTI policy:

    • The LGBT Ireland Report: national study of the mental health and wellbeing of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people in Ireland. Published by GLEN and BeLonG To, Dublin. 2016
    • Being LGBT in School A Resource for Post-Primary Schools to Prevent Homophobic and Transphobic Bullying and Support LGBT Students. GLEN (Gay and Lesbian Equality Network). 2016
    • LGBTI+ National Youth Strategy 2018-2020. LGBTI+ young people: visible, valued and included. Department of Children and Youth Affairs Ireland. 2018